SPORTS
09/02/2019 06:57 EDT

Serena Williams Serves 'Greatest' Tribute to Daughter On 2nd Birthday

Glowing words and the sweetest throwback photo combined for a winner of an Instagram post.

Serena Williams overcame an ankle injury to defeat Petra Martic in straight sets Sunday at the U.S. Open while revisiting her “greatest accomplishment.”

No, it didn’t happen on the court. Williams posted a gorgeous tribute to her daughter Alexis Olympia on her second birthday ― a photo of the tennis champ cradling her daughter while new dad Alexis watches them.

“The last two years have been my greatest accomplishment,” Williams wrote.

Williams turned an ankle during her match Sunday and still made quick work of the 22nd-seeded Martic, 6-3, 6-4, to advance to the quarterfinals.

She noted the personal occasion in an on-court interview afterward. “She was in my arms by now,” Williams said of Alexis Olympia. “I think she was born around 11:30ish. It was, like, the best day of my life.”

(Williams, a Jehovah’s Witness, does not formally celebrate birthdays.) 

Considered the G.O.A.T. by many, Williams is seeking her 24th Grand Slam singles title. She has yet to capture a tournament since becoming a mom.

But Sunday’s Instagram reminded fans that she’s been winning all along.

“Sometimes my heart literally aches when I’m not around her,” she told Forbes recently. “But, you know, it’s good for me, I guess, to keep working and just — to all moms out there that it’s not easy. It’s really kind of painful sometimes. Sometimes you just have to do what you have to do.”

Husband Alexis also honored their daughter’s birth, noting how quickly the time had passed while wishing Alexis Olympia a “happy cake day.” “Thank you for being the greatest thing we’ve ever done,” he wrote.

The Reddit co-founder, who recently penned a passionate essay about paternity leave, also used his post to lobby for paid family time-off. “And thank you for teaching me that every parent in US deserves those first months with their newborn,” he wrote. “I’m a better business leader because of it.”